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Michael Paredes and Officer Joseph Santana and died in the shooting as officers responded to a report of a stabbing.
Suspect and Murder
The suspect who fatally shot two police officers at a motel outside Los Angeles on Tuesday was on probation for illegally carrying a gun and had been banned from packing guns since 2011.
Justin Flores, 35, allegedly murdered the El Monte police corporal. Michael Paredes and Officer Joseph Santana and died in the shooting as officers responded to a report of a stabbing.Flores had served two prison terms for robbery and carjacking and did not contest possession of a firearm as a felon last winter, according to The Los Angeles Times.
The weapons charge could have sent the career criminal back to prison for three years, but instead he was sentenced to two years probation and 20 days of time served, the newspaper said.A day before the shooting, Flores’ probation officer requested a revocation hearing after the suspect allegedly assaulted his girlfriend last week, violating his probation, the report said.
Arrest and Investigation
Instead of being arrested and jailed, Flores was allowed to remain on the streets before the June 27 hearing.
The Los Angeles County Probation Department was “currently investigating” why Flores was not arrested for the rape, the outlet said.
Paredes and Santana were reportedly attacked after knocking on a room door at the Siesta Inn on Tuesday afternoon.A shootout with Flores began in the bedroom and ended in the parking lot with all three men dead, authorities told the newspaper.“They grew up here; to us, they are homegrown from El Monte,” Ancona said. “They are our boys.”
“They were good men,” Capt. Ben Lowry, acting chief of the El Monte Police Department, told the newspaper. “These two heroes paid the ultimate sacrifice today. They were killed by a coward.”Santana, 31, is survived by his wife, his daughter and his twins.Paredes, 42, a 22-year veteran, left behind his wife, daughter and son.
Flores reportedly followed his wife Diana Flores to the hotel, where she booked a room to escape him after she stabbed her a day earlier, according to NBC Los Angeles.Police arrived shortly after Flores found his wife at the motel.
Diana Flores said she warned officers that her husband was not in the right frame of mind and that he had a gun.“I love my husband to death but…this was not my husband. This was a monster,” said Diana Flores.
“I didn’t want anyone to get hurt in this,” she told NBC. “So sorry. They didn’t deserve it, nor did their families. They really didn’t. They were trying to help me.”She said that she fled the room when the two police officers arrived and soon heard gunshots, so she ran.